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The Pros and Cons of Having Your Parents Live with Family or Move to Assisted Living

A daughter smiles and embraces her older mother from the side

When you notice a loved one can no longer safely live on their own, you’re faced with a choice. Do you become a family caregiver by inviting them to live with you? Or do you consider choosing a community that offers assisted living services, like Regency Oaks Both options are viable, and here are a few of the pros and cons of each.

The Setting and Accessibility

Home: Certainly, a person is likely to feel more comfortable in a familiar setting like a family member’s home, especially during the first few days of their transition. That’s a plus, at least at the outset. However, the typical home may present many of the same obstacles and hazards the senior’s home did. For instance, stairs may limit accessibility to upper floors and hinder movement, and furniture may be spaced in a way that impedes a walker or wheelchair.

Community: The best assisted living communities are designed to accommodate those who live there, and getting used to the support and conveniences doesn’t take long. Residences are comfortable and equipped with walk-in showers, floors are either smooth or covered with low-pile carpet to ensure easy mobility, handrails are built into hallways, and elevators make moving from floor to floor a cinch. Even dining is easier, with all meals prepared and served by others, and chairs that roll toward and away from tables.

Advantage: Assisted living community

Amount of Support

Home: Most people enter a family-caregiving situation with the best of intentions. And there can be profound upsides to spending more time with your loved one or bringing a grandparent into the household. Nevertheless, caregiving is more than a full-time job; it’s an “all-the-time job.” Caregiver burnout is a serious condition that takes a toll on the caregiver as well as those who depend on them.

Community: At a community like Regency Oaks, a team of trained professionals care for residents, attending to needs 24/7. Your loved one will quickly get to know and trust the team. Likewise, the team will know your loved one – their needs, history and preferences.

Advantage: Assisted living community

Assistance with Daily Activities

The reasons an older adult might need assistance vary; however, it typically comes down to needing help with one or more of the following ADLs (activities of daily living):

  • Bathing
  • Dressing
  • Medication management
  • Dining

Home: There’s no reason a family caregiver can’t assist with ADLs, but we refer you back to the section above regarding caregiver burnout. These tasks must be managed multiple times every day, which is possible at home but at a significant cost of energy and time by a family member.

Community: Essentially, this is the point of an assisted living community – to manage ADLs gracefully so that your loved one can more easily enjoy daily events. One other profound advantage for you and your loved one: While the community team manages the care, you can maintain the loving family relationship you’ve built over decades.

Advantage: Assisted living community

Social Connections

Home: Age-related isolation and loneliness are threats to mental and physical health. To be sure, when a senior can no longer thrive in their own home, moving to a loved one’s home is a positive step. In the best-case scenario, they’ll have frequent daily interactions with grown children or other adults, as well as grandchildren – however, the best case isn’t always realistic. Every family member has their own life to live, and not every activity can include an older parent or grandparent. Moreover, living at an adult child’s house continues to deprive the senior of peer interactions.

Community: By definition, a community is a place of fellowship. At an assisted living community, residents socialize every day, sharing conversation, interests, mealtimes and activities. Spending some time by oneself is important and it’s always a choice but never a necessity.

Advantage: Assisted living community – by a wide margin

The aspects listed above only scratch the surface on the advantages of life at a community like Regency Oaks. For more information on all that’s included with assisted living services, read our blog.

Finding Your Best Assisted Living Option

At Regency Oaks, we care for your loved one as if they were our own family so you can focus more on your relationship and less on being a caregiver. Our community also features inviting gathering spaces and private dining rooms so you can enjoy your visits together. To experience our community for yourself, contact us here.